Picking new professional software is a big undertaking. Event planning and management tools are ones you rely on every day, and sometimes subtle differences can lead to huge gains (or headaches) down the road.

That’s where an insider’s perspective on the event software industry can come in handy. So, when choosing event management software for your team, look for tools that have these traits:

1. A user-friendly and intuitive workflow

When your software is central to a productive workflow, be sure to list exactly what features you need from a software. Then ensure that potential software has these features optimised. If you need flawless check-in, for example, make sure the check-in app is easy to install, simple to teach to event staff, and the technical side is fast and reliable.

It’s key to see how functional the software is in practice, too. If you find yourself thinking “I never thought of doing it that way!” right away, it’s probably a good sign for your workflow. Keep an eye out for tools that let you demo or test them enough to understand if they fit your needs.

Powerful features are no longer the exclusive domain of tech geeks and usability isn’t only for the masses. Tools that are both technically impressive and user-friendly exist are the new standard, so seek out the best on both fronts.

5 people talking around a table

2. A dedicated support and customer success team

As with most tools, every now and then you’ll need some assistance. In the events world, that assistance could be on very short notice (as a guest is impatiently waiting, say) or very specific to the needs of your event.

It’s reasons like these that make it important to confirm that the software’s customer success team is prepared to support you in times of need.

Make sure that the event software’s support team is ideally in-house or at least fully focused on that software only. You want the support team to care about the effectiveness of the software as much as you do and know all the ins and outs. Consider companies renowned for their customer service and look for similarities in your software’s customer success team.

3. Transparent pricing and feature bundles

When looking at available features and costs, you should be able to clearly decipher what you get for the price you pay. Again, knowing what you need before you start software shopping can help you make the right selections.

Look for software that stands behind transparent pricing and feature packages. Research any hidden fees, subscription services and unnecessary features that are driving up the price before committing to a software. If you have any questions, reach out to an in-house support team member. A software team committed to transparency will be happy to clarify any confusion regarding pricing or features.

One more tip: Look for software that have fair and simple upgrade and cancellation policies. Good professional software is built to grow when you need it to and is less likely to hide behind complex agreements that make it hard to adjust what you get.

A crowd of people at a concert

4. Reducing complexity, not adding to it

Does the sales pitch sound a touch too rehearsed, and maybe like it isn’t quite listening to what you’re looking for? Gimmicks and weasel-words in feature descriptions and sales calls can be misleading and irrelevant to organising your events.

If you don’t need all the features, but the software sales team is insisting that you incorporate them into your work to get the software to work, that may be a sign that the individual features aren’t quite what the marketing pitch promises, and they’re trying to get you reliant on their whole system.

Be honest with the needs of your team. Maybe the newest event management software complicates a system by adding new processes you don’t need. Make sure new tools are actually improving your work, not adding to it.

5. Trusted by eminent organisations and brands

Don’t forget: your team isn’t the first one to go through this kind of search. Learn from the success stories out there. Check out the case studies, featured logos, testimonials, independent reviews, and calibre of organizations relying on the software.

With zkipster, for example, the events team behind the Nobel Peace Prize Celebration relying on one tool to coordinate hundreds of top-priority guests, gives you a good benchmark for the complexity of events that software is designed to handle.

As with any service, start your search armed with a list of your events’ needs and find the tools that answer those needs. With these 5 points in mind, you have a clear framework to help select powerful event software that maximises your events and team’s capability. Good luck!

Alex Carter works on marketing strategy at zkipster, check-in and event management software for the world’s best events. Event professionals use zkipster for fast, reliable, and secure guest check in, custom online invitations, and smart event analytics. Trusted by global brands and organisations for custom online invitations, guest check-in, and more.